Edited by Pramodita Sharma, Nunzia Auletta, Rocki-Lee DeWitt, Maria Jose Parada and Mohar Yusof
Chapter 3: The next generation: pathways for preparing and involving new owners in Colombian family businesses
Carlos Miguel had just finished writing a report on a shared value initiative undertaken by Mulitplex R'o Cauca, a family owned company from Cali (Colombia’s third largest city). Mulitplex R'o Cauca is part of Cine Colombia, founded in Medellin in 1927, and the country’s premier film exhibitor and distributor, generating over US $150m in revenue and employing 1,600 workers. While writing his report, Carlos could not help noticing the similarities between Mulitplex R'o Cauca and the companies owned by his own family. The most recently founded of these firms was a battery-making factory that his grandfather started in the 1950s in Cali, having learnt the trade as a teenager in Argentina. Today, the factory has 600 workers, while another family company that retails auto parts across the country employs twice that number. The companies are managed by the second generation (Carlos’ mother, and her three siblings). In terms of revenue, they are in the same multi-million dollar bracket as Cine Colombia. Carlos thought about his grandfather. He remembered that when he was a teenager, he would accompany him to visit the different divisions and operational sections of the factory while his grandfather patiently explained how things worked.
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